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Ch.90 Ron and Don Discuss their Roles with their Wives

Ch.90 Ron and Don Discuss their Roles with their Wives

          May 2021

          One of the Greek philosophers thought that humans could be divided into four elemental categories: fire, water, air and earth. Each element had special characteristics; each had its own strengths but also weaknesses.

          My identical twin brother Don and I call each other about once a week. This evening we discussed our roles in our marriages and families. We soon realized that we share a similar characteristic: our central element is definitely earth. That means we stay grounded, especially in crisis situations or during periods of adversity. That makes us good caregivers. I’m uncertain which elements our wives, Pat and Randa, would select as primary for themselves. I’d say that Pat is mostly water (healing) and air (creative), with a little fire thrown in from time to time.

          Right now, Don and I need to stay grounded. Pat, of course, has Lewy Body, and one of the main aspects of Lewy Body is unpredictability. Pat needs me to stay firmly in reality when she becomes confused, and she needs me to keep our daily routines intact. Meanwhile, two of Randa’s children have serious physical or situational concerns, tapping her energy; she needs Don to help steady her when she becomes a little shaky.

          I have often been told that I should get more help, that I should get more rest, that I need to take more breaks from the caregiving role. The trouble is that earth is supposed to stay stable. Ground should not shake. Caving in is strictly forbidden.

          However, occasionally Don or I suffer earthquakes. They may be physical. For instance, Don has had a couple cancer and stroke scares while I had a heart stent two years ago. They also may be mental; small tremors that manifest themselves in the form of brief anxiety attacks and larger ones felt more deeply inside when we find ourselves close to exhaustion (but sometimes hiding that fact from ourselves as well as from others). I am attempting to recognize these tremors and act upon them accordingly by asking for help and taking more breaks. It is not easy, though. I feel that I belong with Pat, giving her support and stability. That’s when I sense that I am doing what I have been put on this planet to do.

 

Pat’s comments on Ron and Don Compare their Roles in their Families:

           I think Ron is right in how he describes me – mostly water and air with a little fire. I think Ron’s description of himself is very real. I don’t know what I’d do without your earth. Your earth helps me hang onto my own earthiness. I am earthy too.